President Biya Sworn-in in a Full Gear Democracy

All the legal instruments previewed by the Constitution were present in the oath taking ceremony.

Cynthia EFOPA

According to Article 7 of the Constitution of Cameroon, the President of the Republic take office before the Cameroonian people, in the presence of the members of Parliament, the Constitutional Council and the Supreme Court meeting in solemn session. This was however not the case in previous oath taking ceremonies. All the legal instruments cited in the laws for the swearing in ceremony was not yet put in place by the State and just the members of the Lower House of the Assembly, and the Supreme Court sitting in place of the Constitutional Council enjoyed the prerogatives.

6th November, 2018 will therefore go into history as the very first episode where all the legal organs where present in the parliament for the swearing-in of the President elect. Other than the speaker of the House of Assembly, who is the officiating officer and who has the prerogative to swear in the President on behalf of the Cameroon people, this year’s investiture ceremony panel was complete with the presence of the president of the Senate and the Constitutional Council. This comes to testify why the deed of oath of office was signed by the president of the National Assembly, Cavaye Djribril, President of the Senate represented by the Vice President, Aboubakary Abdoulaye, President of the Constitutional Council, Clement Atangana and the President of the Supreme Court, Sone Mekobe. The deed of oath of office was establish in five copies, one for each of the aforementioned institutions and a copy for the President of the Republic.

The Senate is the Upper House of the Cameroon Parliament created in 1996 following an amendment to the constitution. It effectively became operational in 2013 following the signing of a presidential decree by President Paul Biya on 27 February 2013 to convene the Electoral College and call elections for the Senate. According to the Constitution, the Senate has 100 seats, representing ten senators per region, 30 are appointed by the President of the Republic and 70 are elected by Municipal Counsellors from the 360 Municipal Councils. The CPDM party has the majority of Senators.

Created some 15 years ago, the Constitutional Council on its part came into full flesh existence in February 2018. It is the supreme legal instance in the country and its decisions cannot be appealed it is the gatekeeper of the laws of Cameroon and is made up of 11 members headed by a Chief Judge. It is the only jurisdiction charged amongst others in hearing and judging post-electoral disputes and has the sole powers to proclaim the final result of the presidential election.

The solemnity of the investiture was concretized at the Presidency of the Republic when the President of the Grand Chancellor of the National Orders of Valor, Peter Mafany Musonge awarded the sash and insignia of the Grand Cordon of the Order of Valor to President Biya who is the Grand Master of the National Order as spelt out by Article 31, 32 of the 1972 laws

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